Are Sublingual Drops The Best Vitamin B12 Liquid Drops?
Perhaps one of the most commonly utilized supplements outside of multivitamins themselves is vitamin B12. Taken by many for its ability to provide boosts to various systems throughout the body, this powerful nutrient appears in many different supplemental forms, from multivitamin formulas to individual liquid drops. But what do the best vitamin B12 liquid drops look like? What do they do for your body? Do sublingual supplements really have an advantage over typical liquid supplements? In this article, we will explain the purpose that vitamin B12 supplements fulfill in your body as well as some of the potential benefits of taking your vitamins and minerals sublingually.
The Role of Vitamin B12
Practically the superstar of the B complex vitamin family (consisting of 8 vitamins total), vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is a water-soluble vitamin that has an impact on a number of systems throughout the body. Since it is a water-soluble vitamin, vitamin B12 is not stored anywhere in the body, making it very difficult to consume too much of this powerful nutrient; however, it is essential that you make sure you consistently consume enough of it.
Like many of the other B complex vitamins, vitamin B12 plays an important role in both metabolic and neurological function. Cells rely on glucose for fuel, which is generated by breaking down the food that you eat (1). Vitamin B12 assists with this conversion, often resulting in a burst of energy akin to drinking caffeine. B12 also helps maintain healthy brain cells and may even combat the symptoms of depression thanks to its role in synthesizing mood regulating chemicals like serotonin (2).
Vitamin B12 deficiency occurs more frequently than you may think, especially in vegans and older individuals. Vegans may struggle to gain an adequate amount of vitamin B12 in their diets because this nutrient typically comes from animal products, such as beef, liver, chicken, fish (trout, salmon, tuna fish), milk, yogurt, cheese, and eggs (3). If you are not regularly consuming foods that are fortified with cobalamin, then your doctor may instruct you to take a vitamin B12 supplement to fill in those gaps. Similarly, seniors may have a difficult time absorbing B12 as efficiently as younger individuals, leading them to develop a deficiency much more easily (4). No matter what your situation is, you should consult with your doctor before starting to take any form of supplement regularly.
Benefits of Sublingual Supplements
The word “sublingual” may sound complex at first, but taking your supplements sublingually is oftentimes even easier than taking them in other formats. If a supplement states that it can be used “sublingually,” then that simply means it can be absorbed by placing your dosage directly under the tongue as opposed to swallowing it. Some studies have shown that consuming vitamins and minerals sublingually may result in slightly faster absorption rates as opposed to swallowing them normally (5). As you may already know, liquid supplements generally absorb more efficiently compared to solids like pills and gummies thanks to their ability to skip over digestion. Sublingual vitamins take this even a step further by allowing nutrients to be absorbed directly into the bloodstream, greatly lowering the risk of all or part of your dosage exiting your body before it could be fully utilized.
For anyone who dislikes the taste of supplements, has trouble swallowing, or experiences digestive issues of any kind, sublingual supplements can be a lifesaver. Not to mention, sublingual liquid drops can easily be taken and utilized on the go, making it easier than ever to give yourself that added boost of energy from your vitamin B12 supplement. However, you must pay close attention to the label when deciding to take your supplement sublingually, as it will indicate whether or not that particular formula is designed for sublingual absorption. Some formulas, like Better Family’s Liquid Daily multivitamin, can be either swallowed or used sublingually, but others may only work one way or the other.
So, are sublingual drops the best form of vitamin B12 liquid drops? The answer is: it depends on your preferences and priorities. If your priority is absorbing your supplements as efficiently as possible, then you should certainly consider investing in a sublingual formula in order to ensure your peace of mind. But, for those who prefer to swallow their vitamins or mix them into a beverage, standard liquid drops may still be the best solution for you.
- Morris, Susan York. “Vitamins for Energy: Does B-12 Work?” healthline, 17 September 2018, https://www.healthline.com/health/b12-vitamins-for-energy.
- Berkheiser, Kaitlyn. “9 Health Benefits of Vitamin B12, Based on Science.” healthline, 14 June 2018, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/vitamin-b12-benefits.
- Robinson, Jennifer. “What Is Vitamin B12 Deficiency Anemia?” WebMD, 16 December 2020, https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/vitamin-b12-deficiency-anemia.
- Wong, C.W. “Vitamin B12 Deficiency in the Elderly: Is It Worth Screening?” Hong Kong Medical Journal, April 2015, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25756278.
- Narang, Neha & Jyoti Sharma. “Sublingual Mucosa as a Route for Systemic Drug Delivery.” International Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, 2011, https://innovareacademics.in/journal/ijpps/Vol3Suppl2/1092.pdf.